The Board of Trustees rewarded Daniel Lynch's commitment and contributions to the Thayer School of Engineering with an endowed professorship last July.
Carol Muller, assistant dean for administration at the Thayer School, said an appointment to an endowed professorship or chair is the highest honor a professor can receive.
"They select a senior faculty member whose work is exceptionally done," she said.
A 15-year veteran of the Thayer School, Lynch said his new appointment to the MacLean Professorship has given him more confidence to pursue new research at his discretion.
"It's a great honor to be named to an endowed chair," he said.
His future research may explore global management of industrialization, Lynch said.
Lynch, who teaches undergraduate and graduate-level courses in environmental engineering, is currently working to simulate ocean movement with computers.
Dean of the Thayer School Charles Hutchinson said he was pleased with Lynch's appointment and praised Lynch for his contributions to the school.
"He has been involved in developing a lot of new opportunities for students in the area of environmental engineering," Hutchinson said.
Christopher Naimie, who is in the fourth year of his doctorate studies in environmental engineering, has been a research assistant for Lynch for nearly two years.
"Being an extremely intelligent person, [Lynch] has a tendency to speak about the important concepts of his research and not the day-to-day details that you don't learn very much from," Naimie said. "Overall it's been a very positive experience."
As executive director of the Regional Association for Research on the Gulf of Maine, Lynch is part of a group of scientists who study the Georges Bank ecosystem.
Lynch uses the information he gathers from the study to develop computer simulations.
In 1984, Lynch, one of the initiators of Project NorthStar, a computer network for engineering education at Dartmouth, received the Presidential Young Investigator Award, a national award honoring promising faculty researchers.
Lynch also served as associate dean and director of graduate studies at the Thayer School from 1985 to 1989.
Lynch holds bachelor's and master's degrees in mechanical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a master's degree and doctorate in civil engineering from Princeton University.
Professorships are made possible by at least $1.5 million endowments from alumni or companies. The salary and benefits of professorship recipients are paid largely or wholly by the interest from the endowments.
The MacLean Professorship was made possible through gifts from Dorothy Jean MacLean and her son, Barry MacLean, a member of the Dartmouth Board of Trustees, a Thayer School graduate and a former chair of the Thayer School Board of Overseers.
Professors George Cybenko and Graham Wallis were also named to endowed chairs in July of 1992.
Cybenko was selected as the first holder of Dorothy and Walter Gramm Distinguished Professorship of Engineering and Wallis was awarded the Sherman Fairchild Professorship in Engineering.